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Growing Reader

Picture Books to Help Kids Understand Physical Disabilities and Differences

by Melissa Taylor

Illustration: Rafael López, "Just Ask!"

Timothy Shriver, Chairman of the Board for the Special Olympics, told me (years ago in an interview) that when parents don’t talk about physical and intellectual differences, it becomes the elephant in the room, which gets translated for children as a taboo topic. That’s not what any of us wants. Let’s prioritize discussing and educating children about all kinds of physical differences. One way to do this is to read children’s books that show respectful and accurate representation.